Business etiquette in Peru

What to remember

Business etiquette in Peru

Business etiquette in Peru isn’t a world apart from practices elsewhere in the world. Nevertheless, there are a few things to remember.

As a result of the ‘relaxed’ attitude to time-keeping in Peru, don’t expect your Peruvian business associates, partners or lawyers to arrive on time for meetings - and certainly don’t get angry with them if they’re late! This is very much a part of Peruvian culture and needs to be expected and tolerated. With this is mind, make sure you schedule your business day as loosely as possible, as the knock on effect, especially if you’ve got several meetings scheduled, will be massive if you don’t allow for Peruvians’ inherent tardiness.

Remember that Peruvians place a great deal of emphasis on building relationships - and this extends to the business world. Don’t be surprised if your Peruvian clients want to get to know you before reaching a deal.

Business dress is smart and conservative, as in most of the world. Don’t forget to call people by their proper title - you should always use señor/señora in business situations unless you know the person you’re speaking to well. Lawyers will go by Doctor/Doctora.

Normal business hours are from 8am until 6pm - this may seem long, but Peruvians nearly always take an extended lunch (as in most hispanic countries) from approximately 1pm until 3pm.

Business will nearly always be conducted in Spanish - something you need to be aware of if your command of the language isn’t up to scratch. If this is the case, use an interpreter if you can afford one.  

Further reading

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